Last year as we celebrated Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, the social studies class in my grandson’s middle school discussed the man and his ideas. However, it never once came up that Dr. King was a Baptist minister and his religious beliefs, as well as his philosophical beliefs, were the driving force behind his actions.
Included in Dr. King’s Christian beliefs were the biblical teachings about angels. He took courage in the knowledge that angels were helping those who worked for justice. He wrote, “The universe is under the control of a loving purpose, and that in the struggle for righteousness man has cosmic companionship (angels). Behind the harsh appearance of the world there is a benign power.”
Dr. King and his wife discussed two incidents where angels played an important part in their journey. Dr. King himself had a life-altering experience when he was in the depths of despair. From his description of the incident, it seems likely that angels were present in his humble kitchen at the time. His wife, Coretta Scott King, was also certain that an angel saved her life and the life of their child at another time.
The first incident occurred one night when Martin Luther King was agonizing over the price his activities might exact against himself, Coretta, and their baby daughter, Yolanda, called Yoki. The decision to continue fighting for civil rights was not an easy one. It all came to a head one night in what Martin Luther King would later call his own “Gethsemane experience.”